Baseball Gloves vs Softball Gloves: The Ultimate Guide

Baseball Gloves vs Softball Gloves

One of the most common and confusing questions I always get from my students while coaching them is What kind of glove should I buy?”

If you’re a baseball player, then it’s an easy question. Baseball gloves are made for catching and throwing a ball.

Softball players need to catch and throw, but they also need to field ground balls (which is why softballs have such large pockets).

So which glove is right for your play?

If you are going to play baseball or softball, then the selection of the glove will be a little bit different.

But what are the main differences between both Baseball Gloves vs Softball Gloves, and what are their benefits and drawbacks all I have covered in this article?

Baseball Gloves VS Softball Gloves (The Difference)

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Baseball gloves have a more extended webbing, with less padding on the palm side, whereas softball gloves have shorter webbing, with more padding on the palm side.

So Below you will find the main key points which will tell the main difference between both gloves.

  • Length & Size
  • Fit
  • Webbing
  • Pocket
  • Padding

Length & Size

Softball

The standard size of softball gloves ranges between 11.5 to 12.5 inches. But in this size, various factors are applied when selecting the right size glove for you.

Which includes your hand size, playing position, and personal preference.

However, if you want one that’s even longer than this standard size, go for a 14″, which will be more suitable for adults (men).

Softball Table Chart

Age Group Softball Glove Size Range
5-7 years old 10″ – 11″
8-10 years old 11″ – 12″
11-13 years old 12″ – 12.5″
14+ years old 12.5″ and above

Baseball

On the other hand, baseball gloves come in smaller sizes which range between 9-10″ and go up to 13-14 inches depending on the age and hand of the players.

The smallest size is 9″, which has a circumference of about 18″. This type is ideal for kids aged 12 and below, while the biggest ones at 14 inches, with 21-inch circumferences, are perfect for adults.

Table for Baseball Players According to their age.

Age Group Baseball Glove Size Range
6-8¬† ¬†years old 8.5″ – 10.5″
9-10 years old 10.5″ – 11.5″
10-11 years old 11″ – 12″
12+ years old 11.5″ and above

Fit

Both gloves should fit your hand comfortably when playing the game, so it’s best to try them on before buying one for you.

When doing this, make sure there is a space between the tips of your fingers and the end/tip of your glove, allowing you to catch the ball better.

Softball gloves are stiffer compared to baseball ones because they need more support, especially when catching hard balls so that you can avoid getting injured.

A stiffer glove is usually indicated by light color, which means it’s more durable and sturdy.

Baseball gloves are less rigid as they require less support when catching the balls.

Baseball players use both types, while softball players only choose one of these gloves depending on their game.

Webbing

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The webbing for softball gloves is thicker compared to baseball gloves because it needs more support.

Plus, the stitches are closer together on a softball glove so that you can catch balls easier without slipping out of your hand.

The typical size of the webbings used in both types is between 11.5″ and 12.5″.

If you want a bigger webbing for your softball glove, go for one up to 12.5″, which will allow you only to catch the slowest balls.

Baseball gloves have a closed web, while softball ones are always open at the back part of their hand.

Sp, it means they can easily catch balls compared to baseball players, who need more support when catching fast-flying balls to avoid getting injured.

Can I use my baseball glove for softball?

No, you can’t use a baseball glove for softball because they are different in size and material used, which will make it difficult to catch the ball.

Baseball gloves also have deeper pockets than softball ones, so balls easily fall off once caught with this type of glove.

But if you are playing just for fun, you can use a baseball glove instead of a softball glove.

Conclusion

Softball and baseball are two different games. You will need a glove appropriate for the game you want to play.

But it depends on your skill level as well as which gloves feel most comfortable to you.

But if you are playing for any tournament or league that has strict rules, then going with specific sports gloves, baseball, or softball, is a must for you.

Derek

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